Globalization demanded (even forced) solidarity from us with the political financial system. When we look at the hair raizing, unsolved consequences of this dominance we realize that we need to take back our own responsibility to achieve local and global sustainability and resilience. What to do?
1. Mentality or Mindset
Whether we are citizen, local entrepreneur, politician, government, educator or scientist, we all need to accept that our core natural human values are our shared responsibility. And this responsibility cannot be imported from China, bought with money or delegated to someone else. It is to be carried locally, by ourselves and together (people and institutions). Even tangible elements such as food, water, warmth and housing have to be taken out of the grips of speculative financial brokers and back under our custody as shared responsibility. Just like we are doing through AiREAS with environmental air quality. They all form part of our integral sustainable health and safety.
When we address our local needs and responsibilities together we can reduce our energy usage by up to 70% without reducing our quality of life. This is because the industrialized production and related logistics is the biggest user of energy and largest polluter of our environment. Bringing the productivity close to our consumption, with our own direct engagement, converts a problem into a virtue. Letting go of our ill making individualism will do the rest when we enjoy the comfort again of communities.
2. Grow our own food
Most of our food comes from industrialized megaproductions. It has gradually been deprived from nutrituous values, consisting of 20% what would provide natural food. It also contains residues of fertilizers and pesticides. In occasions these products have been genetically modified too. Most of our illnesses can be directly related to poor, manipulated and processed food. To produce locally may sound difficult, especially in cities, but it is not. It requires commitment and determination. Many techniques are available to experiment with. It is best to create your own food community, avoid the supermarket (for food at least), and start producing and sharing. If desired you can sign up for an inspiration course based on our own experiences and engaging people from all over the world to share experiences.
3. Circular use of products and resources
We have grown so used to “owning” products for our use that the concept of “sharing” needs to be rediscovered and even redeveloped. Why have a car that is 95% unused? Or a toolbox, the scooter, and all that other stuff that we tend to accumulate over time. It uses up space but is hardly used. This may be good for the financial benefits of producers, it is a waste of resources, space and money. Also there is a tendency to makes these products cheaper, with less quality, as disposables.
Managing and sharing these common resources in a community is much more effective, cheap and responsible. We can also collectively assure optimum quality of these products. It requires some organization, trust and access when needed. This can also be applied for our housing.
Our cities have grown into black holes of consumption. Our waste is collected, burned or dumped in landfills. Have you seen what they do with our used clothes? Just like reusing paper we can reuse textile fibers. This has been extensively researched. There are also all kinds of clothes exchange programs possible among citizens that can make your wardrobe become dynamic. Hard plastic can also be grinded and reused like so many other things (metal, glass, etc).
Try to be creative. The bicycle of the artist in the picture is made entirely of metal trash found on the street. Its art is now worth over 15.000€!
Professional electronics consists of many usefull components. Refurbished and reused high tech can be designed into all kinds of applications. It is an area where jobs can be created too.
4. Help each other (neighbors)
Life is full of little things that can be solved by opening up to each other. Helping elderly people changing a light bulb in the kitchen. Maybe do some shopping for that pregnant lady. Walk the dog of this person who had an accident. Life can be so troublesome when we have no one we can fall back on in case of need. Yet the social connection is heart warming and essential for human wellness. We need to overcome our sick making individualism and become caring people again. Care and be cared.
As the say: “By caring for a person may not change the world, it may be a world of change for that person”.
Sustainocracy has established COS3I for social inclusion and peaceful constructive human interaction. We even try to even do projects together, involving restaurants, cooks, handicraft, yoga, etc. But another community announced itself in the Netherlands (and beyond) under the name “Vamilie” and gained rapid support. In this picture we see the amount (each orange or blue tick) of self supporting human clusters that arose. They all intend to do local food, share products, help each other, organize social activities, etc.
5. Apply 4 x WIN entrepreneurship
If you are a local entrepreneur present yourself within the 4 x WIN environment. Especially small (and medium sized) local enterprises can maintain a high quality standard with care for human values, society and the environment, and be financially profitable too. You can position your business in professionalized versions of the above areas. Avoid expensive city centers and present yourself near the people´s homes, with easy access, nice social interaction. Get your resources locally to stimulate local for local productivity. Add value yourself with your expertise. The “Neighborhood of Tomorrow” is a self sustaining community of productivity and social interaction where speculation is not accepted.
Big enterprises tend to have a lot of personnel. Challenging personnel to work from (or near) home, or take the bike to the office, can be combined with a point system. These points can be converted into local tokens that give access to the local for local circular economy.
6. Establish values driven coalitions, also with government
Not everyone wants to be a sustainocrat but if you have the desire to be the linking pin for sustainable shared regional responsibilities around the core natural values, feel free to act like that. It will strengthen all the participants in the network, even the local government. Get the local key stakeholder together at the table of a certain priority and try to establish projects together that would be too complex to be done by each alone.